Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by rmonge00, Mar 7, 2011.

  1. rmonge00

    rmonge00 Chirping

    My chicks just arrived (26 of them)!!! I have everything set up , so I thought I would run it by everyone to make sure I am doing what I am supposed to be doing... I have a 250W infrared heat lamp - it is about 16 inches from the ground - couldnt get a reliable thermometer- and the chicks seem to be huddled around it, though not right in the center - does this sound good? Should I lower it more or keep it here? The room they are in is insulated, but not heated... For flooring, I have put down rags, which I plan on leaving for about a week, and then replacing with wood shavings (any kind except for cedar....) I have chick starter feed in an empty egg box for them to feed on ( I plan on keeping this pretty full at all times) and I have two small water dishes that I will try to change at least 3 times per day. Does all of this sound OK?! One has passed away since I got them this morning, but I think that was mostly from the stress of the flight....

    Also, I taught a few to drink in the hopes the rest would follow suit - is this accurate? They seem to be spending a lot more time feeding a lot more than they are drinking...

    Anyways, I am very interested to hear your thoughts and feedback....


    Also, when can I start feeding them bugs? Do they need grit first? If so, what size grain and how should I give it to them?
  2. bluere11e

    bluere11e Songster

    Feb 8, 2011
    West Palm Beach
    As soon as I get shipped chicks. or hatchabator chicks, they ALL get 3 sips of water right away.. just a dunk of their beaks.. Usually they're pretty good after that
    Good luck..
    Welcome to BYC!
  3. AlienChick

    AlienChick Songster

    Apr 9, 2010
    Glasgow, KY
    Sounds good!
    They do eat a lot.
    And I would lay off the bugs and treats for now.
    Just feed them chick starter for 8 weeks.
    That's really all they need at this point.
    Too many "treats" will cause them to eat less of their starter food.
    IF you do decide to give them treats after a couple of weeks, make sure you give them some grit to grind up the treats.
    Otherwise, with just chick starter, they need no grit.
  4. AlienChick

    AlienChick Songster

    Apr 9, 2010
    Glasgow, KY
    It's a good idea to "know" what the temp is... especially in the beginning.

  5. MyKidLuvsGreenEgz

    MyKidLuvsGreenEgz Songster

    Jan 11, 2011
    Colorado Plains
    About the light: be sure to put it off to one side. That way, if it's too close (too warm), they can move away from it. I like to put the food and water about a foot or two away from the light so that they'll get exercise by moving away from the light/heat. Also helps them acclimate better.

    Good luck!
  6. rmonge00

    rmonge00 Chirping

    Thanks AlienChick

    What kind of thermometer do you recommend? And if I lower the heat lamp and it is off to one side - they wont over heat right? They will just move away, right?


  7. 14 chickens & counting

    14 chickens & counting Chirping

    Jan 6, 2011
    Buena Vista, GA
    I put a stuffed animal that had long arms and legs and my chicks loved huddling around it under the light. Just be prepared to throw away the stuffed animal after the 2nd week. Too much poop!
  8. Lawnman127

    Lawnman127 In the Brooder

    Feb 27, 2011
    I had a mercury and a digital, the digi is much
    easier to read.
    I tried to keep mine leaning against the side standing up, but the
    little fuzzies kept knocking them down and laying on them, so
    you may want a way to fasten to side.
  9. AlienChick

    AlienChick Songster

    Apr 9, 2010
    Glasgow, KY
    You can get a simple thermometer almost anywhere.
    I just happened to pick up an incubator thermometer at my local feed store one day.
    The pet stores will have them (most use them for reptiles).

    If your chicks are running around happily when they're not sleeping, that is good.
    If they always seem to stay huddled, I would be concerned about the temp.

    Too high a temp is just as bad as too low.

    Pick up a thermometer as soon as you can.

    If you have your chicks in a small rubber tub, those things can heat up really fast, so it's a good idea to check the temperature in there.


BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: